End of the Introductory Period
Having surprised and taken Sparta
, Antigonus treated
the citizens with magnanimity and humanity; and after reestablishing their ancient constitution, he left the town in
a few days, on receiving intelligence that the Illyrians had
and were laying waste the country.
This was a instance of the fantastic way in which Fortune
decides the most important matters. For if Cleomenes had
only put off the battle for a few days, or if when he returned
he had only held out for a brief space of time, he
would have saved his crown.
As it was, Antigonus after going to Tegea
Death of Antigonus Doson, B. C. 220.
its constitution, arrived on the second day at
, at the very time of the Nemean games.
Having at this assembly received every mark of
immortal honour and glory at the hands of the Achaean
community, as well as of the several states, he made all
haste to reach Macedonia
. He found the Illyrians still in
the country, and forced them to give him battle, in which,
though he proved entirely successful, he exerted himself to
such a pitch in shouting encouragement to his men, that he
ruptured a bloodvessel, and fell into an illness which terminated shortly in his death. He was a great loss to the Greeks,
whom he had inspired with good hopes, not only by his support in the field, but still more by his character and good
principles. He left the kingdom of Macedonia
to Philip, son